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Omnidirectional photonic band gaps in optical lattices

Grant number: 13/26766-0
Support type:Scholarships in Brazil - Post-Doctorate
Effective date (Start): April 01, 2014
Effective date (End): February 04, 2016
Field of knowledge:Physical Sciences and Mathematics - Physics - Atomic and Molecular Physics
Principal researcher:Philippe Wilhelm Courteille
Grantee:Rodrigo Figueiredo Shiozaki
Home Institution: Instituto de Física de São Carlos (IFSC). Universidade de São Paulo (USP). São Carlos , SP, Brazil
Associated research grant:13/07276-1 - CEPOF - Optics and Photonic Research Center, AP.CEPID

Abstract

In this project, our main goal is to create in an optical lattice, omnidirectional photonic band gaps (PBG), i.e. spectral bands in which there are no modes for light propagation within the lattice regardless of the incidence direction. We intend to observe PBG by realizing a diamond-shape optical lattice with strontium atoms. Although many advances, including PBG, were achieved in photonic crystals, such materials present intrinsic "manufacturing defects" that degrade some essential properties. In unidimensional optical lattices, PBGs were observed, but only for a small incidence solid angle by means of Bragg scattering. Recent results have provided a solid theoretical basis for the occurrence of omnidirectional PBGs specifically in diamond-shape lattices loaded with strontium atoms. In this case, PBGs can also be detected by Bragg scattering, but the strongest indicative results from one of the most interesting consequences of PBG: spontaneous emission suppression. This effect leads to some remarkable prospects: the creation of an atom-photon bound state, and the control of gap solitons (self-localized pulses). Since diamond-shape lattices were never realized, this intermediate goal already represents a great achievement that also opens many research perspectives. (AU)

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